Essential Books for Designers

Thinkertoys (Michael Michalko)
A workbook for better brainstorming.

Design Basics (S. Pentak and A. Lauer)
A textbook to teach you the fundamentals of 2-D graphic design.

The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life (Twyla Tharp with Mark Reiter)
Choreographer and creative Twyla Tharp explains how to develop and hone creativity.

Visual Notes for Architects and Designers (Norman Crowe and Paul Laseau)
Learn how sketching like an architect can sharpen your thinking (and make for some awesome Moleskines).

Geometry of Design: Studies in Proportion and Composition (Kimberly Elam)
Why is a Braun blender or Barcelona chair beautiful? The geometry. This paperback breaks it down.

Design Basics (S. Pentak and A. Lauer)
A textbook to teach you the fundamentals of 2-D graphic design.

The Creative Habit: Learn It and Use It for Life (Twyla Tharp with Mark Reiter)
Choreographer and creative Twyla Tharp explains how to develop and hone creativity.

Visual Notes for Architects and Designers (Norman Crowe and Paul Laseau)
Learn how sketching like an architect can sharpen your thinking (and make for some awesome Moleskines).

Geometry of Design: Studies in Proportion and Composition (Kimberly Elam)
Why is a Braun blender or Barcelona chair beautiful? The geometry. This paperback breaks it down.

ParsonsThe Industrial Design Reader (Carma Gorman)
A paperback history on the origins of industrial design.

Design in the USA (Jeffrey Meikle)
Where do hit products meet necessary products in American culture? A history book and design philosophy book in one.

History of Modern Design (David Raizman)
Strap in. This history textbook spans the evolution of decorative arts, industrial design, and graphic design from the 18th to 20th century.

Design Studies: A Reader (Hazel Clark and David Brody)
A collection of essays examining the “history, methods, theory, visuality, identity, consumption, labor, industrialization, new technology, sustainability, and globalization” of design.

Design as Future-Making (Susan Yelavich and Barbara Adams)
How will design shape our future? (You’ve gotta buy the book to find out.)

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Creative designer with over 17 years experience working in Publishing, Web and Digital Marketing. The Creativejobs' founder is currently focused on developing entrepreneurial projects and researching a career independent from the whims of the client. If you have a project you wish to discuss, please get in touch.